Flash In Public – Archive CD Release

Rare 1973 Live Concert Recording Of Prog Legends Flash Featuring Peter Banks ‘Flash – In Public’ To Be Released October 29, 2013

flash-In-Public-CD-cover-label-250pxMuch to the anticipation of progressive rock fans worldwide, for the first time, an rare recording of UK prog group Flash, featuring legendary guitarist Peter Banks, from January 21, 1973 will be released on CD on October 29, 2013. Titled ‘Flash – In Public‘, this historic and exciting concert recording features the original Flash line-up – Peter Banks, Colin Carter, Ray Bennett and Mike Hough in rare form live at Kansas City’s Cowtown Ballroom. The show was taped on the very first mobile truck for The Record Plant. Flash were on the same bill that evening with The Byrds, who would disband after a few more dates. The shows were all recorded for the Lee Jeans & Cotton concert series – the first nationally syndicated rock concert series!

Tracks include:

  • Small Beginnings 8:36
  • Black And White 12:23
  • Stop That Banging 4:10
  • There No More 8:45
  • Children Of The Universe 8:43
  • Dreams Of Heaven 24.54

Order your copy today from http://www.peterbanks.net/

and be sure to “Like” Flash – featuring the Classic lineup on Facebook

Blastzone Online interviews Ray Bennett

Ray BennettMW: Please introduce yourself?
RB: I’m one of the two original members of Flash.  I was the bass player and one of the songwriters in the old band (early 70′s).  Now I’m the lead guitarist, taking over Pete Banks role in the original band.  The other original member is lead singer, Colin Carter.  Colin was the other songwriter.

MW: Tell me about calling the band Flash?
RB: Obviously that was chosen a long time ago.  As many people know, Peter Banks was also an original members of Yes and he had a part in naming that band.  The idea then was that a short name is easy to remember.  Also, less letters on a Marquee can allow your name to be bigger.  So that was what we went with too.  It was Pete, Colin and British music journalist Chris Welch who came up with the name Flash.  They were out and about partying one night and doing what people do when you have a new band.  Getting drunk and thinking of silly band names

MW: Tell me about the first time you played live with Flash?
RB:  High Wycombe Town Hall in the county of Buckinghamshire, UK.  Jan 1972.  Of course it was tense being the first gig, and the hall had very bad acoustics.  Not a great way to kick things off!   I broke a bass string, which I’ve hardly ever done in my whole life.  I was playing really hard I suppose that night.  We were covered by the UK music press from the start as they were obviously curious about a Yes offshoot and what would probably be an interesting band.  I seem to remember that one review I read from that gig said we were very loud and played everything very fast.  That sounds about right.

Read the full interview here: http://blastzoneonline.wordpress.com/2013/07/31/interview-with-ray-bennett-original-bass-player-for-flash/

Flash on Facebook

Flash Facebook

Join the conversation and stay up to date with the latest FLASH on their newly launch official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/FlashFeaturingRayBennettColinCarter

 

Exclusive stream of “Hurt” from new album

Flash 2013 album cover

Flash, together again after four decades, take on a song that’s already been defined (as a Nine Inch Nails original) and then redefined (with Johnny Cash’s harrowing third-act re-do) — and yet they still find new revelations.

Original bassist Ray Bennett, who has now switched to guitar, is joined by fellow Flash co-founder Colin Carter on this sweeping new version of “Hurt” — available here as an exclusive advance stream. Flash is rounded out by keyboardist Rick Daugherty, drummer Mark Pardy and bassist Wayne Carver on the forthcoming Featuring Ray Bennett and Colin Carter, due May 21, 2013, from Cleopatra.

Along the way, they combine the whispering fragility of NIN’s version of “Hurt” and the Cash remake’s stoic agony, even while adding a new musical narrative that takes the song on a stirring anthematic journey.

It’s the group’s initial project since the passing of original guitarist Peter Banks, who had earlier co-founded Yes. Mike Hough rounded out the initial early 1970s lineup, which saw its self-titled debut go to No. 33 in 1972.

Check out the full article and exclusive stream of “Hurt” here: http://somethingelsereviews.com/2013/05/17/exclusive-stream-flash-hurt-from-featuring-ray-bennett-and-colin-carter-2013/

New Flash Album Out May 2013!

Flash 2013 album cover

Los Angeles, CA – British progressive rock legends Flash, featuring founding members Ray Bennett & Colin Carter, will be releasing their highly anticipated new CD on Purple Pyramid Records on May 21, 2013. Titled ‘Flash featuring Ray Bennett & Colin Carter‘, it’s the first album by the group in 40 years, taking the band to a new level of creativity and virtuosity with this current set of progressive melodic rock tunes.
Founded by lead vocalist Colin Carter, original YES member, guitar legend Peter Banks, bassist Ray Bennett and drummer Mike Hough, Flash released three critically acclaimed albums in the 1970′s and undertook several successful tours of the US and Europe. In the USA, the single “Small Beginnings” reached #29 in the Billboard charts, and the first album ‘Flash‘ made the top 50, propelling the band into major venues on their first tour. In the US, Flash went from intimate venues like the Whisky A Go Go, to large concert halls like New York’s Avery Fisher Hall, to the wild crowd of 300,000 music fans at the Soda Pop Festival in Indiana. Flash also made high profile performances on TV shows in Europe and the US, including ‘The Midnight Special’ and the Wolfman Jack hosted ‘Superstars Of Rock‘.
The band’s new CD was recorded over a period of three years and it delivers a mixture of classic and modern progressive rock sure to please die-hard Flash fans and new listeners alike! Says Ray Bennett, “First and foremost, I think the new album turned out really well. No, that’s being somewhat modest… I think it’s brilliant. I wouldn’t be happy with anything less. The goal for me, and I think Colin would agree, is to put an album together that’s always a turn on. Not just in the beginning when you are all excited about the newness of it, but always. I realized somewhere back in time that it is possible to have that. It’s really just as the old saying goes… ‘a thing of beauty is a joy forever’. I think this CD is always going to shine.” Colin Carter adds, “It’s left brain / right brain rock. Enough skill, detail and finesse to tease the intellect, mixed with enough raw power to send you skidding out of control across the stage on your knees and crashing into amps. Watch out for the splinters!”
Along with Ray, now on lead guitar, and Colin, on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, keyboardist Rick Daugherty has been added to the line-up giving the band’s sound more warmth and depth. Mark Pardy on drums and Wayne Carver on bass make up the new rhythm section. The album includes five new songs penned by Ray and Colin, two new instrumental pieces, and a cover of NIN’s ‘Hurt’, which the band has performed in concert. There is also a new version of the classic Flash song “Manhattan Morning” from the band’s third studio album ‘Out Of Our Hands‘.
Ray explains, “Colin and I did write a large chunk of the old Flash material, and our sensibilities as writers haven’t changed a huge amount. We still write all the time. But obviously we’ve developed, we’re more sophisticated, and we have a few more tricks up our sleeves. I think that all shows up on the new CD. I saw a lot of magic happen on this new album. As it grew into a finished thing, all kinds of excellent stuff popped up as we let it develop. A lot to be said for giving it time.”
“Iconic prog rockers Ray Bennett and Colin Carter have achieved the impossible: they’ve created complex contemporary rock boasting all the sonic hallmarks of Flash’s classic material. It’s all here: dynamic compositions, perfect vocal intonation and kick-ass guitar work.” - Will Romano, author of ‘Mountains Come Out of the Sky’, a history of prog rock
In closing Ray has this to impart, “I think that with the years passing you can get new growth and new inspiration if you are willing to try new things. Colin and I are up for that. However, in our case, oddly enough, trying new things led back to Flash.”
Press inquiries: Glass Onyon PR, PH: 828-350-8158glassonyonpr@gmail.com
 

Order your copy from Amazon.com.

Tracklisting:
1. Night Vision
2. Hurt
3. Something So Dark
4. Manhattan Morning
5. Into The Sun
6. Grand Canyon
7. Morpheum
8. 10,000 Movies
9. Richerd Of Venice

R.I.P. Peter Banks (1947-2013)

PeterBanks_RIP
It’s with great sadness to have to report the death of Peter Banks. He died in his London home on March 7, 2013*  due to heart failure. It is reported Banks was found after not showing up for a recording session.
Thanks for all the music Peter! R.I.P.

OFFICIAL STATEMENTS

YES: We are deeply saddened to learn about the passing of fellow bandmate and founding Yes member, Peter Banks. He was a huge piece of the fabric that made Yes what it is, and our thoughts, sincere condolences, and prayers are with him and his family. Peter, we shall miss you greatly.

JON ANDERSON: I was watching the BBC footage just last month, and we spoke about those wonderful times. Peter was a unique guitar player and a kind soul. I will miss him.
I feel very lucky to have spoken with him over the past year. Even though he was very sick, he would chat away about music and laugh about the journey we have all been on.
He will be missed…Jon

STEVE HACKETT:  ”I’m sorry to hear of Peter Banks’ passing… a great pal and a great guitarist,” Steve Hackett tweeted. “Sweet memories of watching Yes at the Marquee for the first time.”

BILLY SHERWOOD: “I loved working with Peter on the many records I have produced over the years. He always delivered amazing stuff, creative, inspires and always with that classic original Yes flavor that came with his playing. He will be missed by me and many, many other fans of his music and playing.”

 

 

* There have been some confusion on his date of death, but is confirmed to be March 7th (although original reports stated March 8th & March 10th by error).

 

OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE

Guitar Legend Peter Banks Passes – July 15, 1947 – March 7, 2013

London, UK – Best known for his innovative and unique guitar work with YES and Flash, as well as his own critically acclaimed solo albums, guitar legend PeterBanks passed away at his home in London on March 7, 2013. Banks, a founding member of the ground breakingprogressive rock group YES, performed on the band’s first two albums, ‘Yes’ and ‘Time And A Word’. He would go on to form Flash and release 3 well-received albums (Flash, In The Can, Out Of Our Hands), along with several successful tours of Europe and the US, culminating in an appearance on the widely watched late night American TV show ‘The Midnight Special’. With an admitted fondness for improvisation, music critics touted Banks as a cross between Pete Townshend and Wes Montgomery. Even Pete Townshend, one night after witnessing a YES performance, walked up to Banks, slapped him on the back and said, “You’re great!”
After Flash, Peter Banks would form the band Empire in the mid ’70s and eventually release 3 albums ‘Mark I’ ‘Mark II’ and ‘Mark III’. During his career, Banks would release 5 solo albums (Two Sides Of…, Instinct, Self-Contained, Reduction, Can I Play You Something?) and had been active in recent times working with acts such as Harmony and Diversity, Prog Collective, ANT-BEE and Days Between Stations. Banks first solo album ‘Two Sides Of Peter Banks’ has been considered by many as one of the great ‘prog’ records of all time and features an all-star line-up of Jan Akkerman, Phil Collins and John Wetton. In the early 2000′s Banks wrote his autobiography ‘Beyond & Before’ published by Golden Treasures publishing in the US. Peter was putting on the final touches of the log awaited live recording ‘FLASH - IN PUBLIC’ CD set for release on Cleopatra Records at the time of his passing.
Peter Banks will always be remembered as one of the pioneers of progressive rock guitar and will be missed by musicians worldwide.

 

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Perfect Sound Forever interview

Check out the in-depth interview by Ray & Colin at Perfect Sound Forever.

PSF: Being a frequent flyer at the Whiskey-A-Go-Go in the ’70′s, I looked for you guys but never saw Flash adverted. I caught Trapeze, Uriah Heep, and a boatload of the ultra-talented Brit music-makers – even Barclay James Harvest played the Troubador once, down the way from the Whiskey – but the Flash sobriquet never seemed to materialize in SoCal. Did you guys make it to the US?

Carter: Yes. We played the Whiskey in the ’70′s, musta been about August or September of 1972.

Bennett: In fact, I have a picture. There is now a new Flash Live album coming out soon with a picture of Colin standing in front of the Flash billboard, on the street right next to the Whiskey.

Carter: A big billboard!

PSF: Oh hell!… yeah… in fact I remember it now… huge!

Bennett: We played there for a week, with the usual: big record company party, press, and all that. We didn’t play many times in L.A., though. I think we hit the Santa Monica Civic, too.

PSF: Oh geez, I saw lots of great acts at the Samo Civic: Focus, King Crimson, Roxy Music, Gentle Giant, the Strawbs… and I missed you there too? Bad news!

Bennett: Somewhere in the midst of our first or second tour, we ran into a lawsuit with the name, so we were temporarily not playing in California. That’s probably why you didn’t see us around much.

Carter: We also played Balboa Park in San Diego – not many places on the West Coast, though, at all.

Read the full interview at Perfect Sound Forever here: http://www.furious.com/perfect/flash.html

Goldmine Prog Rock Issue

The February 2011 issue of Goldmine features a three-page Flash article as part of their Prog Rock issue.

Superstars Of Rock

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“For the first time since around 1972 you have Peter Banks and Flash doing Children Of The Universe in full grainy Black and White, the song is the 45 version just about 3 minutes and 10 seconds long, taken from the tv series “SuperStars of Rock” Flash was on just before the WHO. as of today this is the only video footage I still have as most were sadly lost in a 1998 house fire. Enjoy this rough copy”
-George “TheMiz” Mizer

Flash headline ProgDay 2010

Flash confirmed to play the 2010 ProgDay in Chapel Hill, North Carolina on September 4th. ProgDay is an annual outdoor festival of progressive music featuring artists from all over the world. ProgDay has been held every year since it’s birth in 1995, making it the longest running progressive rock event in the world.

from ProgDay site:

In 1971, COLIN CARTER, formerly lead singer with PETER BARDEN’S CAMEL, initiated an idea with PETER BANKS, recently the first ex-YES guitarist, to form a new band. Musician RAY BENNETT had previously met Banks while staying with BILL BRUFORD, Bennett’s former bandmate from THE BREED. Recently returned to London, Bennett arrived right on time to fill the bass spot. MIKE HOUGH, a hard working drummer with a jazz, rock and big band background, was discovered by Carter and Banks playing in a ballroom in London. Together they formed FLASH.

In the early 70s FLASH put out three albums on EMI/Capitol Records, had the hit single “Small Beginnings” (#28 Billboard), and toured Europe and the USA four times. They even made it to Australia. But after two and a half years, FLASH disbanded. All four members later reunited in various combinations during the late 70′s and early 80′s. But by 1982 the FLASH members had gone their separate ways.

In 2002 all four original members made contact again and were initially enthusiastic about a FLASH reunion. Now spread out across the globe, plans to get together were discussed over several months. However, in the end, Banks and Hough failed to commit. In late 2004 it was FLASH songwriters Ray Bennett and Colin Carter who began working together again. They discovered that the old chemistry was still there and in 2005 they officially re-launched their musical partnership as FLASH.

2009 saw the almost miraculous resurrection of the fully realized FLASH. Gibson Guitars listed FLASH’s “In the Can” as one of their top 10 vintage classic prog-rock albums. Also in 2009, all of their albums were reissued. Now, with a spectacular new 5 piece line-up and a studio album of new material in the works, these prog-rock pioneers set sail again with renewed vigor and their hallmark originality, ready to continue their saga. Advance copies of the new album should be available in September at Progday.

More info: http://www.progday.net/Bands-Flash.html